We've all got a story.
Mine begins when I turned thirty…
Thirty was the inflection point of my life entering a new era. I had always maintained a steady and practical career, believing that I was not capable of anything creative. However, meeting my husband and certain close friends led to a changed view on what I valued and who I wanted to be. I decided that I wanted to create and own a process from beginning to end. This started the journey to create Page Thirty, a medium to share my creations and values with you.
From the start, we were very fortunate to meet our amazing partners and friends at Ortu Leather, a Los Angeles-based manufacturer of leather goods. They helped sample our first two designs – the Frankie and the Marion. These styles highlighted the mantra of Page Thirty – create simple and classic styles from high-quality materials to stand above fast fashion and the trend du jour. The line was immediately picked up by Therapy, a beautiful boutique in Pasadena CA, and they successfully sold our first run without any marketing efforts.
We then created additional styles in order to present at trade shows. The cost of producing domestically made our prices higher than average, so we incorporated low margins to make it work. During the two shows that we attended, we learned how retailers were in an eternal rat race to chase the next hyper trend. Several buyers claimed that we offered some of the most luxurious leather they had ever felt, but they were hesitant to buy something without fringe or plentiful hardware. We quickly realized that we would struggle as a small business with aggressive production requirements, mass marketing campaigns, and the desire to simply make what we believed were well-designed, quality products.
After a few sessions of wine-induced meditation, I made the decision to forget the traditional retail industry roadmap and follow the wave of new direct-to-consumer brands, brands that I myself admired and shopped from. By offering our products directly to you, we would avoid retail markups and delays, giving you a beautiful product for half of what a department store would charge.
I cannot and do not need to please everyone. If I am transparent and sincere, then I can build a business that provides quality goods to those who believe it is worth it. At its core, Page Thirty is a tribute to people who believe in making their own way.
So here's to the late-bloomers, the non-conformists, and the good folks who believe in doing things differently, honestly, and (hopefully) right.
- Susan Cho, Founder